The Q&A Archives: Growing Gotu Kola

Question: I recently bought the herb Gotu Kola. I've been keeping it where it gets morning sun and afternoon shade, and it seems to be doing OK. But I was wondering if you think it needs more sun or more shade. Also, how often should I water and feed it? I've checked my gardening books, but none of them describes this herb.

Answer: The botanical name for Gotu Kola is Centella asiatica, also known as Hydrocotyle asiatica. It is grown primarily in Madagascar and is used medicinally. Gotu Kola is a creeping perennial and is often used as a groundcover in wet or moist locations. Give your plant full sunshine and keep the soil moist. It's a vigorous plant that generally doesn't require regular feeding, but you can give yours a dose of diluted liquid fertilizer in the spring to help it become established and encourage flowering. The plant will spread by stems and seeds so give it plenty of room in a bed by itself, or contain it by planting it in a pot and sinking the pot into the soil.

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